Reuters – Mexican factory-made exports and non-oil consumer imports fell in February. Manufactured exports fell 0.25 percent in February compared with January. While auto exports fell 2.12 percent, shipments of other factory-made goods ticked up 0.67 percent.
CoinTelegraph – 7-Eleven Mexico unveiled its latest marketing initiative “Big Coins,” a loyalty program that is taking the form of a “virtual social currency.” Customers will be rewarded with the virtual currency “simply by logging into [the company’s] social blog,” reading, sharing or commenting on 7-Eleven’s products pages and such.
Mongabay – In Mexico’s rainforests, club mosses – fern-like plants that resemble the branches of pine trees – are in trouble. All nine species of the club moss genus Phlegmariurus found in the state of Veracruz in eastern Mexico are at risk of extinction.
National Geographic – Ciudad Nezahualcóyotl is the ur-informal settlement of metropolitan Mexico City. From its beginnings as an illegally developed, planned, and built settlement in the late forties, Neza has served as a powerful image of self-built, so called “informal” urbanism.
Sherdog – A bantamweight tilt pitting Alejandro Perez against Patrick Williams has been added to the UFC 188 lineup. UFC 188 takes place at Mexico City Arena on June 13 and is headlined by a heavyweight title clash between Cain Velasquez and Fabricio Werdum.
LAT – Mexico’s soccer friendly with Ecuador on Saturday at the L.A. Coliseum is officially sold out, organizers said. A crowd of approximately 90,000 is expected.
Reuters – Mexico’s Cemex said it had so far earmarked around $100 million worth of assets of the roughly $1 billion to $1.5 billion it is looking to divest.
Reuters – Asset manager BlackRock and U.S. private equity firm First Reserve have taken a joint stake worth around $900 million in the second phase of Mexico pipeline project Los Ramones. The pipeline will eventually run from the U.S.-Mexico border to central Mexico.
Sentido Comun – Grupo Comercial Chedraui faces a labor dispute for alleged mistreatment of workers and for alleged unsanitary conditions at its stores in the United States.
Sentido Comun – Fibra Inn announced the suspension of plans to build a Fairfield Inn & Suites by Marriot hotel in Ciudad del Carmen because the impact the drop in oil prices has had on the area’s economic activity.
Sentido Comun – Kia Motors announced that it will produce its Forte compact in the manufacturing plant it is building in Nuevo León. Another model, so far not revealed, also will be built at the plant when it begins operations in mid-2016.
Sentido Comun – Santa Fe Hotel Group agreed to buy a new hotel north of Mexico City and will spend 305 million pesos ($20.1 million) to buy and renovate the property, which will be renamed Krystal Satellite Maria Barbara.
Sentido Comun – President Enrique Peña Nieto opened the Tlaxcala bypass, a 12 kilometer, four-lane project that required an investment of 967 million pesos ($64 million).
El Mexicano – Six months after 43 student teachers went missing from Iguala, Guerrero, 104 people have been arrested, 48 members of the Iguala municipal police, 16 members of the Cocula municipal police and 40 civilians linked to a criminal organization in Guerrero.
Televisa – A heavy hail fell Thursday afternoon in Cordoba, Veracruz. The size of the hail caused damage to dozens of homes and affected some vehicles. The rain came with winds of 50 kilometers per hour. In 15 minutes the streets were covered with ice.
By Amber Hildebrandt / CBC News
The CBC News report earlier this week that Canada hacked into Mexican computer networks to gather intelligence is expected to worsen an already tense relationship with a key trading partner.
“This type of cyberwarfare and cyberspying is generally done to countries that are considered your enemy, not your friends, certainly not your partners in a free trade agreement,” said Andres Rozental, a former Mexican deputy foreign minister and career diplomat.
CBC News reported that the U.S. National Security Agency and Canada’s Communications Security Establishment “co-operate closely” on computer network access and exploitation in hotspots like North Africa and the Middle East, but also in friendly nations like Mexico and in Europe.
Those details came out of a 2013 memo, written by the NSA, that was among a cache of documents obtained by U.S. whistleblower Edward Snowden, and analyzed jointly by CBC News and the U.S. news site The Intercept.
The memo didn’t name the spy agencies’ specific targets in the countries, nor did it detail the tactics used.
Reuters – Mexican state oil firm Pemex expects imminent approval from the U.S. Commerce Department to allow it to swap up to 100,000 barrels of heavy crude for a similar amount of lighter U.S. oil, what could be the latest milestone toward loosening the four-decades old ban on exporting U.S. oil.
Reuters – BlackRock Inc, the world’s largest asset manager, is looking to invest in infrastructure projects in Mexico, according to sources familiar with the situation.
EFE – Roughly 80 percent of the 601 bodies found in 174 clandestine graves in Mexico between Dec. 1, 2006, and Feb. 28, 2015, have not yet been identified, according to an Attorney General’s report.